The team is already done with its first trip to Florida, so it's time for another projected starting lineup from Once a Metro (your one stop shop for canned bread). I wanted to do a 3-3-4, but I was told I have to take this seriously. In protest, I glued the copier shut at Once a Metro HQ.
I’m using a 4-2-3-1 because that was Marsch’s preferred formation in Montreal and he plans on continuing to use it with New York.
Luis Robles (GK), Roy Miller (LB), Dax McCarty (DM), Lloyd Sam (RM), and Bradley Wright-Phillips (ST) are obvious starters.
Andrew Jean-Baptiste (CB): He has more experience as a starting center back in MLS than anybody else on the roster. Ibrahim Sekagya’s status on the roster is still in limbo, Damien Perrinelle is an unknown quality, and Miazga is inexperienced.
Ronald Zubar (CB): He’s played a lot of high level soccer. He’s prone to horrifying gaffes (check out Youtube for his lowlights), but maybe he’s still a level above the current center backs.
Chris Duvall (RB): A-a-… a-are there any other fullbacks on the roster? Duvall played pretty well last year before ending up in Petke’s doghouse. Hopefully he’ll be even better this upcoming season. It doesn't really matter how good he is because at the moment he doesn't have any competition beyond Connor Lade and trialist Anthony Wallace.
Sacha Kljestan/Leo Stolz (LM/CM): I debated between Kljestan, Stolz, and Sean Davis for these two spots. The team doesn't have a starting caliber left mid (sorry, Sal Zizzo). Jesse Marsch mentioned playing Kljestan, Stolz, or even trialist Mike Grella (who sounds as good as signed) at left mid. The left mid, in this situation, would frequently cut in and act like a second attacking mid. Roy Miller would attack with increased frequency (if that’s possible), and take advantage of the space on the wings. If Kljestan does end up on the wing, then I could see Davis pushing Stolz for the starting spot next to Dax.
Felipe Martins (AM): Felipe handled his visa issues and is on the way. Peguy Luyindula is getting up there in age, and Marsch will be interested in getting his new acquisition acquainted with his new designated player (Wright-Phillips) as quickly as possible. Felipe can play at left mid, but he provides little to no defensive cover. Marsch has talked about playing a 4-2-3-1/4-5-1, which would require wingers contributing on defense. The best spot for Felipe is directly behind the striker where he can take shots from distance and provide opportunities for Wright-Phillips.
Peguy Luyindula: Sorry, Peguy. You’re my favorite player on the team. You’ll still get a ton of minutes this season.
Sean Davis: Davis could push Stolz for the CM spot next to Dax. Obviously if Marsch elects to go with Kljestan in the center and someone else on the wing, then Davis is definitely starting matches on the bench.
Miazga/Perrinelle: One needs more experience, the other is virtually an unknown quality.